“There are 8,894,355 reasons why Ireland should reject the imposition of British-style abortion laws in Ireland.  That is the number of British lives lost since abortion law was enacted; a law that was supposed to be used only in the most extreme circumstances; a law which has led to 600 lives being lost every day – one every three minutes. That’s equivalent to wiping out almost twice the entire current population of Ireland.

It is instructive that because the same British law was not enacted in the north of Ireland there are 100,000 people (5% of the population) who are alive today who would otherwise be dead.

So, to remedy this, and to make a mockery of devolution, the British Government has now imposed a policy to pay women to abort their babies in England – and in the case of girls under the age of 16 to remove them from the country and abort them overseas without the knowledge or agreement of their parents. This smacks of the British policies of the nineteenth century which were based on the recommendation of Malthus that “a large part of the population of Ireland should be swept from the soil” and the beliefs of the twentieth century eugenicists, led by Marie Stopes, who said that the “racially negligent” should be prevented from having babies.

Today, Marie Stopes clinics are part of an abortion industry that has generated three quarters of a billion pounds over the past decade. This is all about money and vested interests about ideology and sloganeering, not about love and care for women and their babies.

Instead of State abduction and State sponsored abortion, Britain should be insisting that both lives matter – and supporting both women and their children. If Britain really believed in equality, and was against discrimination, it would be offering pregnant Northern Irish mothers the same funds – thousands of pounds – to abort their babies to help them, if they wish to go ahead with their pregnancy.

And, as Ireland decides whether to uphold the Eighth Amendment or to adopt British-style laws, let no-one say this is about human rights. The foundational human right is the right to life. Without the right to life, all the others rights are worthless. There are 8,894,355 reasons why Ireland should continue to uphold the sanctity and dignity of every human life – because every life matters.”